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Discussion: 40 Voices - Paul Van Nevel

Posts: 4

Post by Polarius T May 7, 2011 (1 of 4)
Geohomid,

In your review you said: "This was brought home to me during a performance of Tallis' 40-part motet 'Spem in alium'.... It ground to a halt after several minutes, and Maestro Abbado had to turn to the audience..."

Abbado (well, either one of the two!) conducting "Spem in alium"?? That's news to me at least.

Thanks,

PT

Post by Polarius T May 30, 2011 (2 of 4)
Bump.

I'm just being very curious about this. Was it really him, Geohomid?

PT

Post by Geohominid May 30, 2011 (3 of 4)
That's my recollection, Polarius. I was, of course, at the concert, and at the time one of my friends was an alto in the Edinburgh Festival Chorus, and we discussed the episode subsequently. The piece was first on the programme, a brave thing to do, going into such a complex work "cold", and I think she said that Abbado missed a crucial cue or wasn't clear enough.

Cheers,
John

Post by Polarius T May 31, 2011 (4 of 4)
Geohominid said:

That's my recollection, Polarius. I was, of course, at the concert, and at the time one of my friends was an alto in the Edinburgh Festival Chorus, and we discussed the episode subsequently. The piece was first on the programme, a brave thing to do, going into such a complex work "cold", and I think she said that Abbado missed a crucial cue or wasn't clear enough.

Cheers,
John

Thanks, John. But I'd be surprised, big-time, if it indeed was Abbado; I'm a big follower and I don't know of anything going that far back in time in his performance choices. Even Bach is a relatively recent addition (although he did perform Matthäuspassion for a few times at least during his early years in Italy).

Moreover, I can't see someone as superbly effortless in far more complex music having trouble with works like Spem -- it's, after all, "only" for eight five-part choirs with little else to pay attention to besides the voice parts. But think of stuff like Boulez', Nono's, Stockhausen's, Ligeti's, etc. unbelievably dense contrapuntal scores with a gazillion additional parameters to follow and realize with exactitude unheard-of in Tallis' time.

So that makes me think it must have been sbdy else, or my world will be revolutionized.

Cheers back,

PT

Closed